Release seminar for World Literatures: Exploring the Cosmopolitan-Vernacular Exchange

5th February 2019, 3-5 pm
NOTE! NEW VENUE: E371, Department of English, Stockholm University

The first joint publication of the multi-disciplinary cosmopolitan-vernacular research programme appeared in November 2018. Published by Stockholm University Press in the Stockholm English Studies series, World Literatures: Exploring the Cosmopolitan-Vernacular Exchange is an open access book with contributions from all 26 researchers in the group. To mark this moment, the seminar will present the outline of the book as well as a few of the chapters in greater detail. A post-seminar will follow in the department afterwards.

Inspired by Erich Auerbach’s famous coinage of the Ansatzpunkt (the concrete point of departure necessary for the study of literature on a world scale), the wager of World Literatures is that the cosmopolitan-vernacular dynamic provides not only an adaptable comparative fulcrum for literary studies, but redresses what has repeatedly been identified as the inability of the world literature paradigm to accommodate literature which does not circulate, accumulate global prestige or make it on the Euro-American market. How has the vernacular been defined historically? What is its place in world literature scholarship? How is it inflected by gender? How are the poles of the vernacular and the cosmopolitan distributed spatially or stylistically in literary narratives? How are cosmopolitan domains of literature incorporated in local literary communities? What are the effects of translation and language change on the encoding of vernacular and cosmopolitan values? These are some of the questions addressed in the book.

Speakers: Stefan Helgesson (English, SU), Christina Kullberg (French, UU), Yvonne Lindqvist (Translation Studies, SU), Adnan Mahmutović (English, SU), Mattias Viktorin (Social Anthropology, SU), Helena Wulff (Social Anthrolopogy, SU)

written by Alice Duhan
25 January, 2019